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Archives: November 2006

Who’s The “Senior Cable News Executive?”

After nominating Lou Dobbs for’s Media Person of the Year, Ken Auletta writes:

  “Last week I bumped into a senior cable news executive at a holiday party and he sang the virtues of opinioned journalism. ‘Everyone has an agenda,’ he told me. ‘All reporters are biased. Why not be open about it, transparent? We shouldn’t pretend. The audience is looking for honest opinions, for opinions they can relate to.’

The problem with this mindset, which is echoed at Fox and CNN and talk radio and on many blogs, is that it promotes cynicism, encouraging viewers or readers or listeners to believe there are no pristine facts, just opinion. So search out the facts you agree with. Conservative facts. Liberal facts. But not common facts.”

So: who’s the “senior cable news executive?”

Big Three In Amman: Couric’s Trifecta

Katie Couric‘s trifecta on tonight’s CBS Evening News:

      Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri Maliki

      Iraqi Foreign Minister Hoshyar Zebari

      U.S. Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice

“Gibson just has Maliki. Williams only has Condi,” a tipster says…

> Also: Couric appeared on The Early Show with excerpts of her first two interviews…

“Civil War:” “Can An American Network Decide When The U.S. Surrenders In Iraq?”

“Can an American network decide when the U.S. surrenders in Iraq? Can that network decide when the U.S. leaves Iraq and under what conditions? Is NBC covering the news or creating the news?”
John Gibson was just getting warmed up. On Wednesday’s Big Story, he continued:

“Maybe Bob Wright knows a lot about civil war because that is apparently what has been happening inside NBC News.”

And he concluded with this: “People are entitled to their opinions, even network chairmen. But you have to wonder if it’s such a great idea for network chairmen to decide when it is we have lost a war.”

“Civil War:” FNC Isn’t Using Term Because Non-Iraqis Are Involved, Moody Says

Wednesday on Special Report with Brit Hume, a segment about the “civil war” debate included a previously unreported statement on the subject by FNC VP John Moody. Here it is:


The statement continued: “We’re not using the term because there are non-Iraqis in the fray, and that makes it something different.”

(Via Media Blog)

‘Primetime’ Gets Five-Episode Run

ABC’s Primetime “will get its first shot of the season on the regular schedule next week, when it begins a five-episode run for a limited series it calls ‘Basic Instinct,’” THR’s Paul Gough reports.

It’ll air at 10 p.m. for five consecutive Wednesdays. “But it’s not clear whether ‘Primetime’ will get to keep the 10 p.m. Wednesday time slot, which will follow ‘Lost’ beginning in February. ABC has yet to announce its January schedule.

EP David Sloan says his team is also working on new editions of “Medical Mysteries” and “The Outsiders…”

Midterms: Summary

Midterms: Klein Must Be Giddy About CNN’s Election Night “Triumph Over FNC”

Midterms: Cable #’s Settle; FNC Back At #1

Midterms: Couric “Was Saddled With 2 Of The Dullest Analysts On TV”

Midterms: CNN #1 On Wednesday

Midterms: ABC & CNN, Surprise Victors

Midterms: 31 Million Tune To Coverage

Midterms: What Brit Wants, Brit Gets

Midterms: “We Rocked;” The Networks Give Themselves Glowing Reviews

Midterms: ABC Loses Most Of “Dancing” Lead-In, But “Vote” Is Still #1 Among Nets

Midterms: NBC Nightly News #1 On Tues.

Midterms: CNN Tops FNC In 25-54 Demo

Midterms: “Best Competitive Ratings In Recent Memory” For MSNBC

Midterms: All The Cablers Are Up Vs. 2002; Third Place MSNBC Increases Share

Midterms: Nancy Pelosi’s Media Tour

Midterms: Who Got The Least Sleep?

Midterms: WX Delays Couric’s DC Arrival

Midterms: Heavy Traffic On

Midterms: An Hour Of ‘Nightly News’

Midterms: “A Wake” On Fox News; “Times Square” Graphics Overload On CNN

Midterms: Mixed Reviews Of Couric

Midterms: Booh-ya!

Midterms: Doubting The Exit Polls

Midterms: Morning Papers Part 2

Midterms: Morning Papers Part 1

Midterms: Gibson’s “Love & Knowledge Of Politics Deepened ABC’s Coverage”

Midterms: CNN Likes Bloggers…

Midterms: …Bloggers Like CNN

Midterms: FNC Stopped Relying On NEP

Midterms: ABC #1 In Overnights

Midterms: Early Morning Cable Coverage

Midterms: CNN’s Always-On Ticker; Gibson’s Tidy Set; Olbermann’s Jokes

Midterms: NBC 1st To Call House For Dems

Midterms: FNC’s “Core” Audience Faces Bad News On An Election Night

Midterms: Behind The Scenes At CNN

Midterms: More Comments From Viewers

Midterms: Comments From Viewers

Midterms: The Viewer Polls Are Open

Midterms: 1st Cliche Of The Coverage

Midterms: Cool Tools On News Web Sites

Midterms: Blogging Along With CNN

Midterms: Everything’s On The Wall At CNN

Midterms: The Evening News Intros

Midterms: “The World’s Watching This… It’s All About Iraq,” Matthews Says

Midterms: FNC’s Phone Polls In 7 States

Shocking News On Election Day

Midterms: Covering Voter Irregularities

Midterms: I’ll Drink To That

Midterms: Hemmer In OH, Cavuto In AZ

Midterms: ABC To Start Coverage At 9:30

Midterms: C-SPAN Aired 161 Debates

Midterms: Shuster’s “Intimidation?” Scoop

Midterms: Media En Masse In Ohio

Midterms: “Wolf for Senate”

Midterms: Rather Will “Play It Straight” On His Comedy Central Premiere

Midterms: Syler In NJ, Smith In VA

Midterms: Shep Live At 5pm Tuesday

Midterms: Football Night Election Night

Midterms: Adding Staff On The Web Side

Midterms: CBS Downplaying Expectations For Couric; “This Is Like Round 1″

Midterms: Cable Newsers Likely To “Narrow The Gap” With Broadcast Nets

Midterms: Tracking Tucker’s Tie

Midterms: “Something Majestic”

Midterms: Couric In D.C. On Wednesday

Midterms: Rather, Stewart, & Colbert

Midterms: Lots Of Video On The Web

Midterms: Monday Notes & Quotes

Nov. #’s: Program Ranker

Here’s the Nov. 2006 program ranker. Bill O’Reilly is #1, Hannity & Colmes are #2, Brit Hume is #3, Shep Smith is #4, and Greta Van Susteren is #5. Larry King is #6, repeats of the Factor are #7, and Lou Dobbs is #8. FNC has ten of the top twelve programs.

Countdown is MSNBC’s top-rated program, with about 230,000 more viewers than any other hour on the network. CNBC’s top show is Deal or No Deal. And Nancy Grace is HLN’s top hour. Here are all the numbers…

> Nov. 2006 program ranker (PDF)

Nov. #’s: FNC “Retains Largest Share Of Audience Post Midterm Elections”

Fox News Channel retained the most viewers since the midterm elections, “while MSNBC and CNN were unable to sustain their election gains,” the network said in a press release today.

“Since November 7th, CNN and MSNBC’s audience have lost nearly two-thirds of their total day audience, down 61% and 60% respectively,” while FNC lost 44%. “In Primetime, the drop off was more severe with CNN losing 75% of its audience and MSNBC hemorrhaging 77%,” while FNC lost 60%.

Big Three In Amman: Vote

Big Three In Amman: Notes


The Big Three all anchored from Amman tonight. At the end of their respective broadcasts, NBC’s Brian Williams and ABC’s Charles Gibson voiced remarkably similar segments about Iraqi refugees who have fled the country for refuge in Amman.

Katie Couric‘s broadcast stood out with the only package from Baghdad, an interview with the U.S. ambassador in Iraq, and a report about the International Police Training Center outside Amman. Here are the coverage notes:

NBC: David Gregory and Richard Engel joined Williams in Amman. Jim Miklaszewski reported from the Pentagon and Tim Russert provided the “big picture” from the D.C. bureau.

ABC: Martha Raddatz and Terry McCarthy joined Gibson in Amman. As part of ABC’s “Mission: Iraq — What’s Next?” coverage, WN featured a conversation between Gibson, Fareed Zakaria, editor of Newsweek International, retired General Jack Keane, and Richard Haass, the president of the Council on Foreign Relations.

CBS: Jim Axelrod and Mark Phillips joined Couric in Amman. Elizabeth Palmer reported from Baghdad. David Martin contributed from D.C. Couric interviewed Zalmay Khalilzad. Harry Smith handled headlines from NYC.